The Correct Way To Test Your Eye Degree When Buying New Glasses

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Many Singaporeans have turned to contact lenses and Lasik so that they do not need to deal with the hassle of wearing glasses.

In fact, many of them even choose to do so for aesthetic purposes.

As a result, a lot of us tend to banish our prescription glasses to only the boundaries of our own home, or perhaps to the coffee shop near our place.

And since we don’t use it often, and we only use it for a short period of time each day, why should we waste money on getting a new pair of prescription glasses? 

Here’s Why

According to Dr John Ang, president of the International Vision Academy, Singaporeans usually get prescribed new glasses every two or three years. This is, however, not recommended.

New prescriptions should be done every year, or at the very least, once every two years. Some experts also emphasised that individuals who are above 50 years of age should get their eyes checked annually especially if they have a family history of diabetes, glaucoma or macular degeneration.

Dr Ang also mentioned that children who have a high risk of myopia should get their eyes checked every six months.

This is so that myopia can be managed and they can take the necessary precautions to reduce the chances of them getting serious eye conditions in the future.

How to Choose an Optimal Pair of Glasses

While you may want to look for something that fits your face shape, you also need to consider how well the glasses help in your vision.

Most optometrists now have an autorefractor, a device that estimates the prescription of your eyesight by having you look at a house or a hot air balloon in the distance.

Image: kwongshinoptical.com

This is not accurate enough because it is just an estimation, which is why this will almost always be followed by you entering a dark room with your optometrist and him or her handing you a pair of heavy weird-looking glasses.

Your optometrist will then insert two different lenses for you and ask you to pick the clearer one as you stare at the letter ‘E’ on the wall.

However, this is also subjected to error especially when you go for a checkup after a long day of work or school where your eyes have already been strained, be it because of staring at the computer for too long or reading passages for too long.

This may result in an incorrect prescription because you are unable to accurately judge which lens is clearer.

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The fit of the new pair of glasses is also very important. For those who are using progressive lenses, an incorrect fit could result in problems when reading, according to Dr Ang.

Other than getting the right prescription and the right fit, you should also pay attention to how you feel when you’re wearing your new pair of prescription glasses.

Slight Dizziness

Dr Alex Ong, an optometrist and director of Ong’s Optics, mentioned that slight dizziness is common when you first wear your new pair of glasses. We’ve all experienced that, right?

However, if you’re unable to get used to it within a week or two, you should immediately tell your eyecare practitioner so that you can get that fixed.

Other reported causes could be the pupil distance, placement of the lens in the frame, or just issues with the frame itself.

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Headaches and Eye Strain

Dr Ong said that headaches are rare unless the change in prescription is very huge which results in you straining your eyes to see.

Dr Ang agreed and further added that the strain could also be due to the change in frame of glasses, like when you change to an aviator frame that is double the size of your initial one.


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Image: framesdirect.com

The headache and eye strain would typically disappear after the eye muscles become relaxed again. However, likewise, if you’re unable to get used to it within a week or two, you should go back to your eye care practitioner for another check.

The Floor Appears to be Floating

This generally occurs when your prescription for myopia increases a lot, according to Dr Ong. It can also be due to you changing to a new pair of lenses for astigmatism. This would usually go away after your eyes get used to it.

So no, you didn’t get a pair of glasses that were made for Harry Potter.

Being Sensitive to Certain Colours

The lenses with the blue filter to protect your eyes from the blue light coming from your mobile devices or computers may change your perception of colour. When using these lenses, the world will seem like it’s more yellow than usual. Despite this not causing any problems to your vision, it may cause you to have double vision in extreme cases.


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This can also be further worsened by a frame that does not fit well or an incorrect prescription. Otherwise, you would be able to get used to the blue-filtered lenses within the first week.

How to Adapt to New Prescription Glasses Faster

Whatever the reason when you get your new pair of prescription glasses, allow yourself to have one week to get used to them.

In order to ensure that you will get used to your new glasses, Dr Ang advised that you wear them daily and avoid switching back to your old pair during this adjustment process.

You can start out by wearing them for just a few hours, before gradually adding an hour until you adapt to them fully. He also suggested wearing them during the day when your eyes are well-rested instead of the night when your eyes are tired and strained.

If problems still persist, you may wish to revisit your eye care practitioner to get them checked.


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